Carl Hagelin scored at 10:52 of overtime to lift the New York Rangers to a Game 5 victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins and into the Eastern Conference Second Round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
* The Rangers clinched a series in overtime for the first time since May 11, 1997 (Game 5 of ESF at the New Jersey Devils; GWG: Adam Graves). The last time they accomplished that feat at Madison Square Garden was May 27, 1994 (Game 7 of EF vs. New Jersey; GWG: Stephane Matteau). Via Elias, New York has clinched 10 all-time series in overtime -- three on home ice.
* Hagelin has scored each of his playoff game-winning goals against the Penguins. He also had the decisive goal in Game 6 of their second-round matchup last year, when the Rangers erased a 3-1 series deficit en route to a berth in the Stanley Cup Final.
* Hagelin also had the primary assist on Kevin Hayes' overtime winner in Game 4. “I think any time that you can win in overtime twice, it shows that your team has a lot of character,” Hagelin said. “We'd do anything for each other, so we are definitely looking forward to the next series.”
* Hagelin was 7-5—12 in 25 games in last year's postseason, finishing second on the club in goals. He matched a career-high with 17 goals in the 2014-15 regular season, including his only other NHL overtime goal on Jan. 20 vs. the Ottawa Senators (1-1—2).
* Elias says the Rangers won in overtime in consecutive postseason games for the fourth time in franchise history. However, only two of the previous instances occurred in the same series – both in the Stanley Cup Final (1940 vs. the Toronto Maple Leafs, 1950 vs. the Detroit Red Wings).
* Each of New York's four wins vs. Pittsburgh was by a 2-1 score. Elias says the Rangers are the second team in NHL history to score two goals or fewer in all four wins in a playoff series. The Maple Leafs accomplished the feat twice – in the 1945 Final against Detroit and the 1999 EQF vs. the Philadelphia Flyers.
* The Rangers' only loss also was by a one-goal margin (4-3 L in Game 2). Elias adds that this was the first time the Rangers had every game decided by a one-goal margin in a best-of-7 series.
* Derek Stepan opened the scoring less than five minutes into the first period, with Derick Brassard earning an assist. Brassard was 3-1—4 in the series and now has 12-13—25 in 26 career games against the Penguins (regular season and playoffs).
* Henrik Lundqvist made 37 saves, including 19 after the second period, to earn his eighth career playoff overtime victory. He has won seven of his last eight playoff games vs. Pittsburgh (1.34 GAA, .954 SV%) dating to the 2014 second round, allowing exactly one goal in each victory.
* Overall, Lundqvist has won nine of his last 11 contests (regular season and playoffs), posting a 1.78 goals-against average and .936 save percentage in that span.
* The Rangers will face the winner of the series between the New York Islanders and Washington Capitals in the Second Round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs. New York has played each eight times in the postseason (4-4 vs. WSH, 3-5 vs. NYI). The Rangers won the last playoff series against each, defeating the Capitals in seven games in the 2013 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals and sweeping the Islanders in the 1994 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals en route to their last Stanley Cup.
* ICYMI: The Empire State Building was lit in red, white and blue to celebrate the Rangers' series victory.
2015 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS BRACKET CHALLENGE
Among the more than 800,000 entries for the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs Bracket Challenge powered by Samsung, 89% picked the Rangers to win their series against the Penguins – including 37.2% who selected them to win in five games.
ANDERSON STRONG AGAIN; SENATORS FILL NET TO FORCE GAME 6
The Ottawa Senators built a 3-0 lead through two periods and Craig Anderson made 45 saves – including 19 in the final 20 minutes – to help the Senators stave off elimination against the Montreal Canadiens for the second straight game.
* Ottawa forced a Game 6 after facing a 3-0 series deficit for the first time in five tries in franchise history. Overall, the Senators improved to 14-7 in the fifth game of a playoff series.
* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Senators are the third team in NHL history to force a Game 6 against the Canadiens after trailing 3-0 in the series. Montreal won the other two in the sixth game – 1973 ESF vs. the Buffalo Sabres and 1988 EQF vs. the Hartford Whalers.
* Anderson improved to 6-2 with a 1.47 goals-against average and .960 save percentage in eight career playoff contests vs. Montreal. That includes a 2-1 record with a 0.95 goals-against average, .976 save percentage and one shutout in this series.
* Anderson also boosted his record to 4-2 when making at least 45 saves in the postseason. He set a playoff career high with 51 saves vs. the San Jose Sharks on April 18, 2010 (1-0 OT W while with the Colorado Avalanche).
* Bobby Ryan (2-0—2) scored his first two playoff goals in a Senators uniform (5 GP). He collected 10-5—15 in 26 postseason games with the Anaheim Ducks from 2007-13.
* Overall, Ryan found the back of the net for the first time since March 19 vs. the Boston Bruins, snapping a 16-game goalless drought. It was his first multiple-goal effort since Dec. 29 vs. the Buffalo Sabres, when he had his fourth career hat trick.
* Patrick Wiercioch scored his first career playoff game-winning goal; he has two game-winners in the regular season (159 GP), both in 2014-15. Overall, he has 2-2—4 in this series, after compiling 3-10—13 during the regular season (56 GP).
* After scoring the lone goal in Game 4, Mike Hoffman (0-2—2) picked up his first career playoff assists. Mika Zibanejad also added two assists. Erik Karlsson and Erik Condra scored the other Senators goals.
DUBNYK, WILD BOUNCE BACK TO TAKE 3-2 SERIES LEAD
Devan Dubnyk made 36 saves and the Minnesota Wild scored four unanswered goals to overcome an early 1-0 deficit – and rebound from a lopsided Game 4 loss – and take a 3-2 lead in their series with the St. Louis Blues.
* The Wild hold a 3-2 series lead for the first time in franchise history. In fact, this marks the first time that Minnesota will enter an elimination game with a series lead of any margin.
* Minnesota has won at least three games in a series on three other occasions, but each time overcame a series deficit before advancing with wins in Games 6 and 7 (2003 WQF vs. Colorado, 2003 WSF vs. Vancouver Canucks and 2014 Western Conference First Round vs. Colorado).
* Via Elias, Dubnyk's 36 saves were the fifth-most by a Wild goaltender in the postseason. The only goaltender to make more saves in a regulation win in the playoffs was Dwayne Roloson (April 10, 2003: 39 SV in 4-1 W at Colorado).
* Dubnyk improved to 13-2-0 in his last 15 road games dating to Feb. 18 at the Calgary Flames. That includes a 2-1 record with a 2.01 goals-against average and .929 save percentage in the postseason.
* Minnesota, which lost 6-1 in Game 4, has not lost consecutive games in regulation since Jan. 11 and 13 (4-1 L at the Chicago Blackhawks and 7-2 at Pittsburgh). Dubnyk was acquired by the Wild on Jan. 14.
* Nino Niederreiter broke a 1-1 deadlock in the second period with his second goal of the series. His three career playoff game-winning goals are the most in franchise history, surpassing Wes Walz and Mikael Granlund.
* Marco Scandella, Mikko Koivu and Charlie Coyle also scored for the Wild, which picked up the first victory in the series by a team that did not score the opening goal.
NHL ANNOUNCES VEZINA FINALISTS
Devan Dubnyk of the Minnesota Wild, Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens and Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators are the three finalists for the 2014-15 Vezina Trophy, which is awarded “to the goalkeeper adjudged to be the best at his position,” the National Hockey League announced Friday.
The general managers of the 30 NHL clubs submitted ballots for the Vezina Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced Wednesday, June 24, during the 2015 NHL Awards from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Click here for more information on each finalist.
* ICYMI: The NHL will reveal the three finalists for the Norris Trophy on Monday, April 27.
Vladimir Tarasenko scored the lone St. Louis goal. It's his League-leading sixth of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs. He has 10 goals in 12 career postseason contests. . . . Blues goaltender Jake Allen (4 GA) allowed more than two goals for the first time since March 1 at Vancouver. . . . Nick Spaling scored his first playoff goal in a Penguins uniform (5 GP), exactly four years after his only other postseason goals. He scored twice for the Nashville Predators in Game 6 of the 2011 Western Conference Quarterfinals vs. Anaheim, including the series-clinching goal. . . . Canadiens defenseman Tom Gilbert scored his first career playoff goal. Greg Pateryn picked up his first career NHL point on the play (22 GP, regular season and playoffs). . . . Penguins captain Sidney Crosby played in his 100th career playoff game; it happened two days after teammate Evgeni Malkin reached the same milestone. . . . The NHL announced the start time and national television information for Sunday's playoff games. . . . The Oilers hired Peter Chiarelli as president of hockey operations and general manager.
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